Call it a separation of church and date.
That's the issue at in South Huntington, where for the first time, school administrators have banned gay couples from attending the prom after a 17-year-old female student asked to take a female date, who is not a student at the school.
School officials say their ruling is based on the understanding that marriage is between a man and a woman.
"Every decision that we make on a high school level should reflect that teaching," said Bro. Gary Cregan, the school's principal. "We kind of felt that if we approved of a same sex couple coming to the prom, it would appear that we are approving same sex marriage."
Cregan said it was the the first time he's been asked to allow a same sex couple to attend the prom in his eight years as principal.
"It's never been a discussed item," said Cregan.
Cregan said he informed his chairman of the board of trustees and bishop of the dioceses Thursday about his ruling and possible media interest.
He said the decision was not difficult to make and based on 2000 years of collective wisdom.
"I know that there are cultural wars and this is a hot button topic in the press, but we had to really think and reflect on church teaching and that made it a little easier for us to make a decision," said Cregan.
Gay students are welcome to attend the June 6 prom, but only as a guest of the opposite sex or by purchasing an individual ticket, which is more expensive, according to Cregan.
Some St. Anthony's students have a problem with that.
"I'm all for people going to prom with the people who make them happy," said Francesca Barone, a senior who will be attending the prom with her boyfriend.
Barone said she knows many people who want to go to the prom with the same sex and that the school's decision is unfair because the issue is more about freedom of expression rather than religion.
She said people are distraught about Cregan's ruling and fighting back for the first time.
"You're allowed to love who ever you want," Barone said.
Johanna Impellizeri, a basketball player at the school, said it's not fair that gay students will have to pay more to attend with same-sex dates.
"I think all the prices should be the same," said Impellizeri, a 15-year-old junior. "There are people who want to go to prom as a gay couple and its more expensive to do that and they are just mad about that."
"I think that they should be able to go if they want and I don't see any big deal in it," said Gavine Ticcione, a junior.
At a banquet this year, the school posted the definition of a couple as between a man and a woman, according to the Cregan, who attends the prom each year and often waitresses same-sex dancing.
"At our proms boys dance with boys and girls dance with girls," said Cregan.